This course is discontinued

STV4309 – Comparative analysis of democracy and democratization

Course content

This course will present the discussion on how to define and analyze democracy in developing countries, new and old democracies and in ‘western’ countries. It will discuss the major empirical findings in this area of research. Three themes will be central: The process of democratization, consolidation and breakdown of democracy and the variation in institutional framework of stable democracies. We shall look at variation in types as well as at debates about the causes and consequences of democratization, consolidation and breakdown.

Learning outcome

We will establish distinctions between democratic and other regime types and internal dimensions making democratic regimes differentn, and present alternative ways of operationalizing ‘democracy’ and discuss the various data bases available for empirical studies. Students should also learn about the advantages/disadvantages of qualitative/quantitative approaches and the different methodologies involved. The objective is also to discuss the merits of the major theories on how to explain democratization and democratic breakdown and also to address the major obstacles to democratization today.


Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.


Formal prerequisite knowledge

Bachelore's Degree programme in Political Science or equivalent.

Recommended previous knowledge

Bachelore's Degree programme in Political Science or equivalent.


11 lectures and 3 seminars, all over two hours.


The form of assessment is a written essay (10-15 pages) and a 5 hour final exam. The essay and exam each count for 50%, and you will receive one overall grade for the course.

Explanations and appeals

Facts about this course




Not decided

Teaching language